Onetime Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort is expected to be transferred this month to Rikers Island jail, where he is “likely” to be placed in solitary confinement, according to reports.
Manafort was sentenced in March to a total of seven and a half years in prison on federal charges, then was hit almost immediately with fresh state charges in New York that could put him outside the president’s power to pardon. Judge T.S. Ellis III imposed the sentence, capping the only jury trial following indictments stemming from special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.
Ellis called Mueller’s recommended sentence range of 19-to-24 years for Manafort “excessive.” The judge also noted that the Trump campaign official was not sentenced for matters related to Mueller’s investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 presidential election.
Manafort was convicted last year on federal bank fraud, tax, and conspiracy charges in two related cases and is serving a seven-and-a-half-year federal prison sentence in Pennsylvania. The Manhattan district attorney obtained an indictment of Manafort on state mortgage fraud charges in an effort to ensure he would still face prison if President Trump pardoned him for his federal crimes.
The New York Times reports:
Mr. Manafort, 70, will most likely be arraigned on the new charges in State Supreme Court in Manhattan later this month and held at Rikers, though his lawyers could seek to have him held at a federal jail in New York, the people with knowledge said. A law-enforcement official familiar with the correction department’s practices, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss security measures, said Mr. Manafort would most likely be housed in a former prison hospital on the island. That is where most high-profile detainees are held, including police officers, those accused of killing police officers, politicians, and celebrities.
According to Fox News, a New York State judge ordered Manafort to be transferred following a request from New York City District Attorney Cy Vance, Jr., a lifelong Democrat.
Rikers Island, which is comprised of nine prisons, currently houses 7,500 inmates. Prisoners who are in protective custody are isolated from other inmates and kept under heavy guard.
Kevin Downing, an attorney for Manafort, did respond to a request for from the Times, nor did a spokesperson for the Manhattan district attorney’s office.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.